Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) AG company completed the 105-kilometer-long offshore section of the pipeline under the Adriatic Sea, according to the statement from the company on Tuesday.
TAP will transport natural gas from the giant Shah Deniz II field in the Azerbaijani sector of the Caspian Sea to Europe. The 878-kilometer-long pipeline connects with the Trans Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) at the Turkish-Greek border in Kipoi, crosses Greece and Albania and the Adriatic Sea, before coming ashore in Southern Italy.
Activities to connect the Italian and Albanian coasts began in mid-January, with pipes welded and tested onboard the semi-submersible pipelay vessel, Castoro Sei. The pipes were then laid on the seabed of the Adriatic Sea in a continuous stretch from the Italian shore towards Albania, the statement said.
A broad range of measures to protect the health and safety of all people involved were taken due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it said in the statement.
Approximately 9,000 pipes were used for TAP’s offshore section and laid at depths of approximately 810 meters below sea level.
TAP's contractor Saipem’s Castoro Sei laid pipes covering an average of 1.2 kilometers per day, but reached a peak on one single day of 2.8 kilometers, the statement said.
"Completing the offshore pipeline section marks another key milestone towards the finalization of our project. Once operational, TAP will bring a new source of natural gas to Europe, supporting decarbonization, energy security and diversification," Luca Schieppati, TAP’s managing director was quoted as saying in the statement.
The TAP project is currently more than 95% complete and first gas delivery to Europe is scheduled for the end of this year, the statement said
The pipeline is expected to deliver 10 billion cubic meters of natural gas annually.
TAP’s shareholding is comprised of BP with 20%, SOCAR with 20%, Snam with 20%, Fluxys with 19%, Enagas with 16%, and Axpo with a 5% share.
By Nuran Erkul Kaya